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Robert Thomas signed a one-year contract with the Giants on Tuesday, James Kratch of the New Jersey Advanced Media reports.


Thomas played in just eight games in 2016, seeing the field for 68 snaps. He recorded five tackles, including a sack, while flashing some decent pass rush potential. He'll have a chance to compete for a larger role with the team in 2017.

Paul Kruger had 25 tackles (19 solo) and 1.5 sacks in 16 games for the Saints last year. He also had one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries.


Hoping to catch lightning in a bottle, the Saints signed Kruger – only two years removed from a 11-sack season in Cleveland – a few days before the start of the season. While Kruger served as a useful real-life starter opposite Cameron Jordan, the veteran defensive end did little to warrant the attention of fantasy owners. A free agent this offseason, Kruger could still return to New Orleans, though the team will likely look to draft a young pass rusher even if he re-signs. Regardless, with only four total sacks over his last two seasons, Kruger is unlikely to be a contributor to fantasy teams in 2017 no matter where he lands this offseason.

Marcus Murphy appeared in only three games in 2016, gaining 105 yards on seven kickoff returns and 57 yards on six punt returns. He also caught one pass for three yards but did not receive a carry.


The writing is probably on the wall for Murphy, the Saints' seventh-round draft pick in 2015, who was last seen fumbling a kickoff out of bounds at the one-yard line in Week 11 last season. Murphy showed some flashes in the return game, but he is unlikely to return to New Orleans in 2017.

Tommylee Lewis finished the 2016 season with seven receptions for 76 yards and three carries for 11 yards. He also had 152 yards on eight kickoff returns and 160 yards on 14 punt returns.


Lewis made the Saints' final 53-man roster out of training camp as an undrafted free agent from Northern Illinois. Although he's listed at only 5-foot-7, Lewis is an explosive athlete who lined up all over the field for the Saints. He particularly excelled as a returner, averaging over 11 yards per punt return and 19 yards per kickoff return. Lewis faces an uphill battle for playing time due to a crowded wide receiver depth chart, but the diminutive dynamo should enter the offseason as the favorite to return kicks for the Saints in 2017.

Will Tye (W, NYG)

Will Tye re-signed with the Giants on Tuesday on a one-year, $615,000 contract, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY.tv reports.


Tye, the Giants' starting tight end a season ago, was one of three exclusive rights free agents that the team re-signed. The 25-year-old hauled in 48 passes for 395 yards and a touchdown last season and barring any offseason additions at the position, Tye looks positioned to open 2017 as a starter. The Giants reportedly have no intention of re-signing former starter Larry Donnell, who is an unrestricted free agent.

Abry Jones will sign a four-year, $16 million contract extension with the Jaguars, Jeremy Bergman of NFL.com reports.


Jones has been with the Jaguars for the first four years of his career, and they've opted to reward him with an extension after he recorded 32 tackles during the 2016 campaign. He ended up starting nine of 15 games and was more than a serviceable run stopper, so look for Jones to continue to play a significant role in the defensive line rotation moving forward. Barring any changes prior to training camp, look for Jones to open the preseason as one of the Jaguars' two starters at defensive tackle.

Bene Benwikere will sign a one-year deal with the Bengals, Katherine Terrell of ESPN.com reports.


Benwikere started the 2016 season as the Panthers' top cornerback but quickly fell down the ranks and was eventually released by the team following a 300-yard performance from Julio Jones. He then had a brief stints with the Dolphins and Packers to end the season. Only 25, the cornerback could play his way into a starting position with the Bengals, who are currently facing a lot of uncertainty in the secondary. Dre Kirkpatrick is a pending free agent, and Adam Jones' best days may be behind him. William Jackson III, the Bengals' 2016 first-round pick, spent the entire season on injured reserve, leaving his status in question as well. Benwikere adds depth at cornerback but will have to show signs of his former self in order to make it on the 53-man roster.

Glenn Gronkowski signed a reserve/future contract with the Patriots on Tuesday.


Gronkowski returns to New England after having four different stints with the Patriots' practice squad. He spent time with the Bills during last year's preseason but was released by the team after Week 1 of the regular season. He'll now work to remain on the Patriots' 53-man roster for the foreseeable future.

Trey Williams signed with the Steelers on Tuesday, Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.


The 24-year-old has had stints with the Patriots, Colts, and Cowboys, but he has never been able to find his footing in the league. He'll now hope to secure a reserve spot on the Steelers' roster as they head into the offseason.

Cliff Avril underwent surgery after seeing a 'core injuries specialist' Tuesday, Conor Orr of Around the NFL reports.


The specific type of surgery has not yet been clarified, but the fact that it had not been heard about until after completion suggests that it was not anything major. Avril was tied for sixth in the league with 11.5 sacks in 2016 and figures to be a disruptive force for the Seahawks again in 2017 opposite Michael Bennett on the defensive line.

Matt LaCosse (knee) re-signed with the Giants on Tuesday, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY reports.


Lacosse missed the entirety of last season with a torn ACL and only played in two games during his 2015 rookie season, so he has much to prove before becoming a factor in the Giants offense.

Sammie Coates (W, Pit)

Sammie Coates (hand) revealed he has undergone groin surgery this offseason, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.


Coates' well-documented hand surgery has been the focus of his offseason activity thus far, but it appears he's been dealing with a lower-body ailment as well. It isn't clear when he went under the knife, but this latest procedure only complicates the receiver's timeline for a return. At this point, Coates appears truly questionable to be ready for the start of team workouts in April.

Torrey Smith

Torrey Smith (concussion) has been cleared for activity and will be ready to go for the start of offseason workouts, ESPN reports.


Smith ended the 2016 campaign on injured reserve due to a concussion and finished yet another disappointing season in San Francisco with 20 receptions for 267 yards and three touchdowns across 12 games played. Now free of concussion symptoms, he'll certainly benefit from having a full offseason unhampered by injury concerns, especially with a new head coach in town that will install a new offensive system.

J.R. Sweezy (back) has been cleared to return to action.


Sweezy started the season on the reserve/physically unable to perform list, but never returned to full strength, so that's also where he ended the year. However, in late January general manager Jason Licht confirmed that Sweezy has been cleared to return to action. Thus, expect the offensive lineman to be fully available for offseason activities and, most importantly, the start of the 2017 campaign.

Earl Thomas (tibia) is recovering well and wearing a special shoe that places pressure on his injured leg, GQ.com reports. "I feel like I'm in a great place, especially being four weeks out," Thomas said.


Thomas ended the season on injured reserve due to a broken left tibia, an injury that apparently forced the All-Pro safety to contemplate retirement. However, that notion has since been put to rest. Instead, he's focused on returning to full strength and was recently given a special shoe that fits around his cast and allows him to place about 25 percent pressure on the leg. Thomas wouldn't have been prescribed this specialized, pressure-bearing appendage if the fractured bone hadn't been healing correctly, so by all accounts it appears he's progressing nicely down the road to recovery.

Roy Philon (ankle) signed a contract with the Steelers on Monday.


Philon was in Pittsburgh for training camp last summer but was waived after sustaining an unspecified ankle injury. However, he avoided placement on injured reserve after reaching an injury settlement with the team. Given the abundance of defensive linemen still under contract with the Steelers in 2017, Philon likely won't compete for anything more than a reserve role this summer.

Lavon Hooks signed a contract with the Steelers on Monday.


Hooks, an undrafted player out of Ole Miss entering his third season in the league, participated in the Steelers' training camp last summer but didn't make it past the final roster cuts. He likely won't compete for anything more than a depth role along the defensive line.

Reuben Foster recently underwent surgery to repair the rotator cuff in his right shoulder, ESPN's Adam Caplan reports.


Foster's recovery is projected to take four months, which will prevent him from participating in drills at next month's combine, and should keep him out of action at Alabama's pro day as well. On the bright side, Foster should have plenty of time to return to health before training camp starts, and he'll still be able to interview with prospective teams. Although Foster joins many former Crimson Tide standouts in entering the league a bit banged up, his shoulder problem doesn't figure to prevent him from being drafted in the top half of the first round, potentially as the first linebacker off the board.

Jason Pierre-Paul (groin) and the Giants are expected to pick up talks over a contract extension in the near future, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reports.


Pierre-Paul is currently slated to hit free agency next month, but in releasing wide receiver Victor Cruz and running back Rashad Jennings on Monday, the Giants freed salary-cap room to ensure they're equipped to meet JPP's desires and keep him off the open market. With that end in mind, the team is anticipated to escalate talks with Pierre-Paul in the coming days and weeks, with a $12 million-per-year contract reportedly a realistic figure for striking a deal. After playing just eight games in 2015 following a notorious fireworks accident, Pierre-Paul registered 53 tackles and seven sacks while defending eight passes in 12 appearances this past season.

Larry Donnell (W, NYG)

Larry Donnell will not be re-signed by the Giants this offseason, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reports.


Donnell has spent all four of his professional seasons with the Giants, but he's failed to build on his faux-breakthrough 2014 campaign that included 63 catches for 623 yards and six touchdowns. In fact, besides that season, the 28-year-old boasts just 47 catches for 346 yards and three scores in his career. While missing 10 games over the past two seasons has contributed toward that decline in production, Donnell is nonetheless now slated to resume his career elsewhere in 2017.